Did you know that a difference of one star in your company’s aggregate star rating can cause a 5% to 9% change in revenues? Furthermore, some sources warn consumers that
20% of Yelp reviews may be fake. So, a dramatic amount of revenue is controlled by information that may not be accurate.
You take pride in how you run your company, deliver excellent customer service, and strive forge mutually beneficial relationships. However, all of this hard work may be in jeopardy if someone posts fake reviews about your business. Fake reviews can be particularly damaging for new businesses or companies that to do not have many reviews online – one person’s opinion can significantly damage a brand. Learning how to flag and remove fake reviews from Google, Yelp, & Facebook is an important part of maintaining a positive online reputation.
Many review websites use algorithms to prevent fake reviews. For example, Yelp and Google tend to restrict reviews published by new accounts. Certain words and phrases are also flagged due to their extensive use in fake comments.
If a false review sneaks through, you can use the methods in this blog post to flag and remove fake reviews from Google, Yelp, & Facebook. While flagging reviews is not guaranteed to work, it will bring the review in question to the attention of site authorities and have it removed in some cases.
Flag & Remove Fake Reviews from Google, Yelp & Facebook
Flag & Remove Fake Reviews on Google Places & Google My Business
These instructions work for the entire suite of Google site options including Google My Business, Google+ Local, and Google Places. On the My Business directory, you can flag the review as inappropriate but not false. “Inappropriate” includes vulgar, abusive, and hate-based language and not negative words about a company’s practices or products. After you flag a review, the text will be checked against Google’s Review Policies for any violations.
Navigate to the Google Reviews for your company, mouse over the review to find the flagging option. In some cases, the review needs to be flagged multiple times before Google will take action, but don’t overdo it. Google’s algorithm may interpret an influx of flagging as an automated or unscrupulous tactic.
Short of removing the review, keep things professional and respond to the review to minimize its effect. Always keep track of your reviews online and be sure to respond. Customers will choose to do business with you based on how you deal with conflicts and whether or not you acknowledge feedback online.
Flag & Remove Fake Yelp Reviews
If you are logged into your Yelp account, you can easily flag a false Yelp review by following the steps outlined below.
- Ensure that you have created a Yelp account and you are logged in.
- Verify that you have claimed your business page before attempting to report content.
- Locate the review in question in the reviews section of your account.
- Click the flag icon to report this review and follow any instructions on the screen.
- Keep an eye on the email inbox you used to register for Yelp.
Flag & Remove Fake Reviews on Facebook
Facebook encourages businesses to respond to reviews directly on the page. However, Facebook does have Community Standards that outline what is and is not allowed to be published on their review platform. If you believe that a fake review is violating Facebook’s Community Standards, you can report the review and request to have it removed from a page. To be eligible for removal, the star rating must include a written review.
To report a review, click the down arrow on the top right, and select Report Post. Follow the on-screen instructions to identify the violation that makes the review eligible for removal.
Take Professional Responsibility for All Reviews
In the end, you and your company are responsible for what people publish about you on the Internet. Today, consumers have more options and information that ever before when selecting who to do business with; quality customer service will always be the first line of defense against negative statements and fake reviews. If you need additional help, consider contacting an online reputation management company to help remove fake reviews, and protect your digital footprint.
The quality of your review profile is directly related to your company’s revenue, so it is useful to know how to flag and remove fake reviews from Google, Yelp, and Facebook. Hopefully, the tips in this article will help you maintain the higher rating in the face of fake reviews and disgruntled customers and clients.